March 21, 2014 at 10:32 pm #13999
Holden Greiner is having a nice professional debut.
Gabe Knutsen has switched teams and is enjoying bigger minutes. The results speak for themselves
CJ McCollum has been struggling a bit lately. It may be an interesting offseasonMarch 24, 2014 at 2:36 pm #14013
Little worried about CJ. When he first came back after injury he was getting consistent, but limited, minutes. Then, with an injury to a player ahead of him on the depth chart, he played more minutes in a few games and played well, scoring career highs a couple times. However, lately, his minutes have been reduced, and he is seeing a few DNP, coach’s decisions. He is falling down the depth chart, not moving up. He is clearly struggling from the field, hitting in very low 40’s from the field, mid to high 30’s from 3. If you projected out his scoring for 36 minutes, I think he is about 14-15 ppg. But, he is usually seeing under 10 minutes a game. He’s on a quality team, but since he started playing, they have been worse overall. So far, disappointing rookie season. Early injury to start, and not much of an impact. Hard to get much news out of Portland about him. Not sure how the coaching staff feels about him and his long-term prospects there. As a 4 year college player, he needs to make an impact in the next year or so, or he may have a tough time getting a second contract in the league.March 24, 2014 at 3:21 pm #14014
Yeah, it’s a little disconcerting. Especially since other young guys (Will Barton and Allen Crabbe) seem to be stealing some of what had been CJ’s minutes. Barton was playing under 5 mpg pre all star game and is playing around 12 mpg post all star, while CJ’s minutes were 15 pre and 12 post all star weekend. Also, the Blazers are in a bit of a tailspin so the coaches aren’t exactly looking for opportunities to get CJ more time.
All that said, I think it will mostly come down to 1) what the blazers choose to do with Mo Williams this offseason, and 2) training camp next year. CJ had a huge hill to climb after missing all that time, so I hope he gets a fair shake next season from training camp. If he does, I think he’ll be fine.March 25, 2014 at 1:39 pm #14018
Initially with CJ coming into the league, I was concerned with scoring efficiency. Could he shoot it well enough from the 2 spot? In reality, in the NBA, no smaller players shoot it well anymore. 50% is a pipe dream now for guards in the NBA.
If you look at the Rookie class, the candidates for ROY are MCW and Oladipo.
MCW is at 39.3% from the field
Oladipo is at 41.4% from the field
CJ is at 41.2% from the field
So, he is shooting it as well as his top peers.
If you look around the league at the stars. Only 2 shoot a high percentage from the field. Lebron shoots an unreal 57%, and KD knocks it down at 50.7%. Outside of those 2, if you look at the star guards or perimeter guys in the NBA, all of their shooting percentages are rather pedestrian.
Really, nobody shoots it well anymore. Sad commentary on the NBA and the quality of play, which has continued to dwindle. My favorite shooting guard of all time was Andrew Toney. In his first 5 NBA seasons, before injuries derailed what was going to be a great career, he shot these numbers:
80-81 – 49.5%
81-82 – 52.2%
82-83 – 50.1%
83-84 – 52.7%
84-85 – 49.2%
Those numbers are unheard of today from the guard spot. For how great Kobe is, he has never shot 50% from the field. His best ever for a season was 46.9%, and career, he is 45.4%. Jordan, on the other hand, shot over 50% from the field 6 times, and for his career shot essentially 50%, at 49.7%. His last couple of years hurt his average as well, post-Bulls.
So, CJ shoots it basically like his peers in this new NBA. Coaches must not like other parts of his game, perhaps his defense, or his ability to get to the rim? I’m hoping he was just way behind after injury, and taking long time to catch up. But, you would expect his minutes to be increasing. The decreasing minutes is an issue. I have a lot of faith in his game. Perhaps a wise GM, takes a shot on acquiring him and ramps up his minutes to see what he can do.
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